The Second Sunday of Lent
St Mary’s and St Andrew’s Worshipping Together
A very warm welcome to all
Genesis 17: 1-7 & 15-16; Psalm 22: 23-31; Romans 4:13-25; Gospel: Mark 8: 31-38
In our Gospel today
In today’s Gospel we hear the words: “And Peter took [Jesus] aside and began to rebuke him” (Mk. 8:32). The more time I spend reflecting on my life, and the more honest I am with myself, the more I realise that the things I say and do in regard to others, and my reactions to particular situations, are a whole lot more about me than they are the other person or the situation. And I think that’s true for Peter in today’s gospel. His reaction to Jesus says a lot more about Peter than it does Jesus. Please spend some time reading it, even though you may well be very familiar with the content.
St Andrew’s Extraordinary General Meeting – 7th March
I have been asked to give notice that there will be an Extraordinary General Meeting by Zoom, for St Andrew’s congregation on Sunday the 7th of March, in order to approve the new Constitution. This will commence at 1 pm. This will also be announced at the end of the pre-recorded Holy Communion Service on Sunday at 10 am.
Donation button on our website
The ‘Donation’ function on the St Mary’s Pro-Cathedral website is now up and running. For those of you who would like to make your giving via this method, please access the website at www.stmaryscardenplace.org.ukand you will find the donation button near the foot of the home page. It is very simple to use and there is no requirement to sign up to PayPal if you do not wish to.
Vacancies on St Mary’s Vestry
As mentioned at the AGM, there is a vacancy on St Mary’s Vestry which is currently being covered by Mrs Freddie Stephens (who has come to the end of her tenure but has agreed to remain in situ until a new member can be identified). I omitted to also mention that there is a Vacancy on St Mary’s Vestry for a People’s Warden. Should anyone from St Mary’s wish to be considered for either post, and would like to discuss it, please contact me using the usual details, and I would be delighted to have a chat.
Diocesan Synod will take place via Zoom on Saturday the 27th of February. During this particular Synod, we will be discussing numerous aspects of what has changed in our worship lives during the pandemic, be it for the better or worse. What should we retain? What have we learned? How has it changed us? Where has God been in all of this? These, and many other questions will be asked, and we will continue to ask them after this year’s Synod has been and gone.
Virtual Hymn Singing
St Mary’s Organist, Mr Matthew McVey, has asked me to highlight this once more in today’s Newsletter: “As hymn singing in Churches is currently a ‘no go’, and we are unable to meet together for worship, I am inviting everyone to take part in some ‘virtual hymn singing’. I fully support Matthew in this venture and encourage members of both our congregations and afar to consider joining in. Matthew has very kindly provided his email address should you want to get involved in some way, and he can be contacted at firstname.lastname@example.org
World Day of Prayer
Bishop Hugh, the Roman Catholic Bishop here in Aberdeen, has requested, via the ‘Aberdeen Churches Together’ (ACT) Group, of which I am the SEC representative, that we circulate the following information, received on Tuesday the 23rd Feb, relating to the World Day of Prayer. This has been emailed out to all of my group email recipients on the 23rd:
10 Days of Prayer, World Day of Prayer for World day of Prayer and Vanuatu
Build on a Strong Foundation
Join WDP Scotland on Facebook and on the WDP Website from Tuesday 23rd February.
With thanks to all who have contributed.
Thought for the Day
Tues. 23rd – Led by The Right Rev. Dr. Marting Fair, of the General Assembly of Church of Scotland.
Wed. 24th – Led by The Most Reverend Leo Cushley, Archbishop of St Andrews and Edinburgh, The Roman Catholic Church.
Thurs. 25th – Led by The Most Reverend Bishop Mark Strange, Bishop of Moray, Ross and Caithness, The Scottish Episcopal Church.
Fri. 26th – Led by Ms. Margaret Roy, Religious Society of Friends.
Sat. 27th – Led by Rev. John Fulton, Moderator of the General assembly of The United Free Church of Scotland.
Sun. 28th – Led by Lieut. Colonel Carol Bailey, Secretary for Scotland, Salvation Army.
Mon. 1st March – Led by Rev. Mark Slaney, District Chair, Methodist Church Scotland.
Tues. 2nd – Led by Rev. Canon John Whittle, Moderator of The United Reformed Church< National Synod of Scotland.
Wed. 3rd – Led by Rev. Martin Hodson, General Director of the Baptist Union of Scotland.
Thurs. 5th – Led by Rev. Rosangela Oliveira, International Director of WDP and Rev. Laurence. Gangloff, International Chairwoman of WDP.
The prayer each day will be led by a member of the Scottish Committee.
Facebook: World Day of Prayer Scotland Friends.
Palm Sunday this year falls on the 28th of March. As per last year, I will endeavour to deliver Palms so that they can be used in time for the day.
St Mary’s Fundraising & Social Group
The St Mary’s Fund-raising and Social Group met recently to discuss what can realistically be considered for the year. Whilst we are now seeing the very real possibility of certain restrictions being lifted, we cannot dismiss the fact that we could return to some sort of lockdown in the future. With that in mind, we have agreed on the following items that were discussed.
Easter Eggs: It was agreed that we should continue with the Easter Egg Donations as we have done previously, and which has been very successful. Therefore, I would ask each and every one of you to consider the next food order you make, or if you are out shopping, purchasing an Easter Egg(s). We are in the process of arranging a pick-up point to ensure compliance with social distancing etc, so please hold on to your Eggs until this can be sorted. Or, if you are passing the Rectory, you are welcome to drop them off if that is easier. As before, the final day for collection would be the Saturday before Holy Week, which is the 27th of March. If, however, you are for some reason unable to purchase an Easter Egg but would still like to donate, we now have a donation function on our website homepage at www.stmaryscardenplace.org.uk We will be donating said Easter Eggs to the Barnardo’s Trust here in Aberdeen.
Easter Brunch: We started off by discussing the idea of an Easter Breakfast and this then settled on an Easter Brunch on Easter Sunday the 4th of April, to align more closely with the St Mary’s Zoom Brunches. Time was set a little earlier at 12 noon. Attendees would be encouraged to dress up or decorate their rooms with Easter items.
Zoom Quiz Night: We felt that it would be quite feasible to organise a quiz night using Zoom. After some discussion we agreed that we would try a Friday night and set the date for 19th March commencing at 7.30 pm. This is of course open to our brothers and sisters from St Andrew’s, and should any other Church Groups wish to get involved, they should contact me in the first instance. Entry fee will be £10.00 per household.
St Mary’s Day: The group discussed the idea of using the Patronal Festival for St Mary on Sunday the 15th of August, by having a St Mary’s Gift Day. We could very well be back inside the Church by then, albeit in limited numbers. We agreed that sums raised through this gift day would be earmarked for repair and refurbishment costs of the Church buildings.
There will be a Christmas Raffle, and details regarding this are still being looked at.
Cheese and Wine Evening: The group agreed that we should provisionally plan for a normal Cheese & Wine Evening in St Mary’s Choir Vestry. The provisional date was set as Friday 15th October. We need to remain positive that we can stage these events however, should government COVID-19 guidelines dictate otherwise, then the event would simply be postponed.
Music Recital: Our Organist, Matthew McVey, has offered to look into some sort of musical recital at St Mary’s, incorporating some of his fellow student cohort at Aberdeen University. This is a work in progress, and Matthew will report back to the group when he has more information regarding this idea.
Photograph competition: The Group agreed to a suggestion by Matthew McVey that we should have a Photograph Competition. The concept would involve St Mary’s and St Andrew’s congregation members sending in their best/favourite photograph, which could be of St Mary’s or another seasonal subject, or even something completely unconnected to the Church. The photographs would then be displayed on the St Mary’s website – with a number and perhaps caption. The best photograph could be voted for by the congregation or The Vestry or myself. A suggested entry fee for each photo submitted was agreed at £2. There would be 1st, 2nd and 3rd place prizes for those chosen. Again, the finer details of this are being looked at so watch this space.
Bottle in a Box: We shall run this once more, and again, details to follow.
Jewellery: One thing we did not discuss, but was the subject of a Newsletter item over a year ago, was a request from me for everyone to go through their old unwanted jewellery, be it broken or not. We all have items of jewellery we either never use or have forgotten about, or it’s broken. Why not consider putting it to a better use in order to help with our several fund-raising campaigns. During my time on the Isle of Lewis, we did a similar appeal and managed to accumulate quite a bit of old unserviceable and serviceable gold and silver. So much so, that we were able to raise in excess of £1000 through selling the broken stuff to jewellers for the gold and silver value, whilst selling the unbroken items at a summer fair. Why not consider putting it to a better use in order to help with our fund-raising. Your donation would be most gratefully received. Just let me know what you have and I will arrange collection. Again, thank you in advance for your continued generosity.
I apologise if this has been a rather comprehensive Newsletter, but I feel it is incumbent on me to keep everyone up to date with what is going on.
Services/ Events at St Mary’s Pro-Cathedral week commencing Sunday 28th February 2021
Lent Devotional Prayer – 7 pm, live, every evening during Lent via Cn Terry’s Face-book Page
Friday 5th March – 10 am, Pre-Recording for Sunday Broadcast
Sunday 7th March – 10 am, Pre-Recorded Broadcast Holy Communion
“Nothing great is ever achieved without much enduring“
St Catherine of Sienna
Rev Canon Terry Taggart